Initial Cast for 'The Hobbit' Announced + Freeman Confirmed!
With the epic two-part adaptation finally getting the greenlight, it's time to turn our attention to casting on The Hobbit. Warner Bros, New Line and MGM jointly announced today the initial cast for Peter Jackson's The Hobbit, confirming that Martin Freeman will indeed play Bilbo. They also list the actors who'll make up the Company of Dwarves. "There has only ever been one Bilbo Baggins for us," Jackson explained. "There are a few times... when you come across an actor [who] was born to play a role, but that was the case as soon as I met Martin. He is intelligent, funny, surprising and brave - exactly like Bilbo... he is our Hobbit."
There are a few more names they announced today. The Company of Dwarves is made up of: Richard Armitage (UK's "MI-5", Captain America: The First Avenger) as Thorin Oakenshield, dwarf leader of the Company that sets off with Bilbo to reclaim the Lonely Mountain from a thieving dragon; Aidan Turner ("Being Human") and Rob Kazinsky ("EastEnders") as Kili and Fili; Graham McTavish (Secretariat, "24") as Dwalin; John Callen ("Power Rangers Jungle Fury") as Oin; Stephen Hunter ("All Saints") as Bombur; Mark Hadlow (King Kong) as Dori; and Peter Hambleton ("The Strip") as Gloin. No other cast members were announced or confirmed in this press release, although we can still assume Sir Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis are in the mix to reprise their roles, even though deals probably haven't been finalized yet.
Jackson adds of Thorin that, "Richard [Armitage] is one of the most exciting and dynamic actors working on screen today and we know he is going to make an amazing Thorin Oakensheild. We cannot wait to start this adventure with him and feel very lucky that one of the most beloved characters in Middle-earth is in such good hands." Deadline also says that they've heard that James Nesbitt and David Tennant are up for roles, plus Stephen Fry, Saoirse Ronan and Bill Nighy (as the voice of the dragon Smaug) are also in the running. Jackson is putting together another strong cast and I'm already crazy excited to see it. Stay tuned for more!